The By Hand serial of knitting lookbooks combines my two favorite things in the world: travel + knitting. Each serial takes you to a different area of North America – Puget Sound, the Great Lakes, Maine, the Blue Ridge Mountains…. I don’t have all of these, though I would love to, but I couldn’t pass up the latest issue – number 8 – about Colorado.
In the Colorado issue, author and creative director Andrea Hungerford, introduces us to the culture of this state through food and chickens. As a frequent traveler to Colorado, I’ve grown accustomed to their farm-to-table mentality. Hungerford says that this must be why so many people in Colorado have chickens, which makes sense.
She then proceeds to take us on a tour of some of her favorite food finds – charming local establishments – which were all new to me. And now, thanks to this, I have a list of places that I must visit the next time we trek up north.
This serial is not directed only to knitters. There are other crafts and craft projects in the lookbooks. In the Colorado issue there’s sewing, baking, and weaving. But my heart always belongs to knitting and there are four knitting patterns in the issue.
My favorite pattern, and one that I must make, is the Elusive Sun Wrap by Hilary Engebretson. Oh, my goodness! This was one of the few times I wanted so badly to buy the kit from Sunshine Yarns….but resisted. I’ve found my own fade for it, minus the main color, which I need to look for.
One of my favorite dyers, Hue Loco, is located in the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park, Loveland, CO. Though I’ve never subscribed to their Backyard Chickens yarn club, I’ve always admired it. And now, due to Andrea’s connection of food + chicken, I understand why this line of yarn exists.
Two other dyers are featured in this lookbook: Sunshine Yarns and Six and Seven Fibers. I’ve known of both of these dyers but have never bought their yarn before. Now, I’m definitely tempted to do so!
Also discussed in this issue is My Sister Knits, in Fort Collins – a yarn store I’ve heard about from the Grocery Girls, and a place that I must visit.
It’s hard to find some past issues of this lookbook, but I’m tempted to try to find all that I can. This is a fantastic way to learn about other parts of the country – from the perspective of a maker.
I highly recommend picking one of these up, especially if you’re planning a trip to one of the featured destinations.